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Curious Lab Offer Sweet Kiss to Whale Shark that Visits Dog's Boat: 'I Felt So Lucky to See it'

People logo People 10/19/2021 People Staff
@jadepursell_/Kennedy News © Provided by People @jadepursell_/Kennedy News

A friendly whale shark was so determined to say "Hello!" to a Labrador that it stuck its giant head out of the water so the dog could give it a kiss.

Jade Pursell, 28, was diving with a friend off Ningaloo Reef, Australia, on September 23 when they came across the inquisitive fish who swam right up to their boat.

The 22-foot-long whale shark poked its head out of the water within feet of Pursell's Labrador retriever Sailor.

Intrigued by the huge creature in the water below, eight-year-old Sailor moved around the motor and leaned overboard to get a closer look.

The whale shark then poked its head out of the water again, and Sailor touched her nose with the whale shark's snout.

"Sailor had never met a whale shark before. I always hoped she would, but that was by far better than I had ever imagined," the dog's owner said of the sweet moment. "I was telling her not to touch it, but neither of them listened to me. Sailor sniffed and kissed the shark."

Diver Jade Pursell encountered a whale shark while swimming near Ningaloo Reef, Australia, but the massive animal was more interested in her labrador retriever Sailor © @jadepursell_/Kennedy News Diver Jade Pursell encountered a whale shark while swimming near Ningaloo Reef, Australia, but the massive animal was more interested in her labrador retriever Sailor

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"I was so happy. To see Sailor meet a whale shark, I honestly just felt overjoyed. Animals are incredible, and it couldn't have gone any better," she told SWNS.

The diver is happy her pet only offered the whale shark a peck and didn't jump on the sea creature.

"It was such an innocent interaction; I felt so lucky to see it. To think Sailor is probably the only dog in the world to have kissed a whale shark is pretty special," Pursell said.

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Initially, Jade thought the bubbles made by her friend Jorja attracted the whale shark to their boat, but now she feels the massive animal knew Sailor was on board.

"I don't know whether it was the squeaking noise Sailor was making in excitement or whether it could sense her, but they were face to face, and then came the kiss," Sailor's pet parent added.

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